If you are a parent to an adolescent, chances are they have asked you for advice on how to make friends.
One of the most important ways for kids to learn these skills is through volunteering and getting involved in extracurricular activities like sports teams.
This article shares five easy ways that parents can teach their teenagers life-long friendship skills with tips on how to make friends as well as what not to do when trying to make friends.
Simple Ways To Help Your Teen Make Friends Easily
1. Boost Their Confidence:
Social skills are something that can be taught, but they also need to come from within. Boosting your teen's confidence is the first step in helping them make friends easily.
If you want to help your teens learn how to make friends, then it will start with making sure their self-esteem and view on themselves is positive and healthy.
Self-esteem is an important thing for everybody, but it's especially key in the teenage years.
Helping your teens feel good about themselves will give them that extra boost of confidence to try new things and meet new people because they are comfortable with who they are as a person.
Find positive ways to motivate your teen so you can help their self- esteem grow. Encourage them to try new things and be the best at what they do!
Mastering social skills can also help your teen make friends easily as well as other life skills like communication, decision-making and problem solving.
Teach them how to solve problems on their own instead of trying to step in all the time so that way you can help them grow into a self-sufficient adult.
Self-confidence and social skills are two key factors when it comes to learning how to make friends, but you also need the right mindset as well. A lot of teens struggle with shyness or being introverted which can come off as mean or stand–offish.
If your teen is struggling with being shy, then try to encourage them to be more social. If they are introverted, help them find ways that work best for their personality so they can make friends easily and comfortably.
2. Encourage Him To Engage In Activities:
If your teen is introverted or shy, then encouraging them to participate in extracurricular activities will help boost their confidence and be able to meet new people.
There are different kinds of groups that can help teens find friends such as community organizations, school clubs and sports teams.
Being a part of an activity shows other kids that you care about your community and school, plus it gives you a shared interest to talk about with other people which is a great way for teenagers to make friends.
Not only will being in an activity help them meet new people but also instill the importance of teamwork.
Teens who are shy often find comfort in having close friendships rather than having one large group of friends.
Find activities that they can do with a small group of people so then you will be able to meet the other parents and teenagers as well.
In addition to getting your teen involved in extracurriculars, encourage them to join after-school programs where there are events going on all the time like clubs or sports teams.
They could also promote making friends by joining after-school programs like chess club or debate teams.
Volunteering is another great way to help your teen make new friends and be a part of the community at the same time.
Volunteering shows that you care about your school, neighborhood and community which will encourage other people their age to want to get involved as well.
Being a part of the volunteering team and making new friends will help your teen make connections that could possibly turn into real friendships in the future!
If you're worried about where to find places for your teen to volunteer, don't worry because there are so many out there. There is no shortage when it comes to finding teenagers who need volunteers in their schools or in the community.
There are plenty of places to get your teen started when it comes to volunteering, but here are some examples:
- Animal Shelters
- Soup Kitchens/Food Pantries
- Homeless Shelters and Charity Organizations (Make Christmas time fun for kids who don't have homes by letting them make ornaments and wrapping presents for their parents)
- Libraries/Book Fairs
There are plenty of ways to help your teen find friends, but these were just a few.
As a parent, it is important that you know the person your child really is on the inside so being able to encourage them in all aspects will ensure they grow up to be a well-rounded and successful adult!
3. Establish A Good Parent-Child Relationship:
Having a good relationship with your teen will help them open up to you about their social life and friends.
Being able to communicate on the same level as they are is key because then you can understand what kind of people they like, what interests do these people have in common, etc.
Establishing boundaries when it comes to friendships is also key in helping your teen feel more comfortable when it comes to making new friends.
For example, if you have a daughter who has trouble making friends, then be sure that she knows what kind of behavior is appropriate and unacceptable.
This will help her avoid having any drama with the people she hangs out with which can make or break friendships depending on how the people handle the situation.
Being a good role model for your teen is also key in helping them make friends as well.
Showing that you are someone who can interact with different personalities because of your social skills will help give them an idea of how to do the same when they get older and have more responsibilities.
4. Hone Their Conversational Skills:
Simply talking to your teen might help them handle situations more successfully. If you see that they have been spending a lot of time alone, the ideal thing to do is to sit down and have a talk with him about what's causing him to be unhappy and anxious.
Teens are often introverted and retiring, so the greatest way to assist them in getting out of their shells is to allow them to talk and master the art of having conversations.
5. Accept And Move On:
If your teen is socially awkward, it's time to stop being hard on them and learn how to support them more. Everyone has a bad day or two where they just don't feel like talking too much because of the way that their week went.
Encourage him/her with words rather than reprimanding for not having enough friends.
To help your child grow up to be an independent, happy person who has high self-esteem, there are a few things you can do.
You should try boosting their confidence by encouraging them to engage in activities that they excel at and take pride in.
Establishing a good parent-child relationship is also important because it will provide the foundation for future relationships throughout life.
Trying out these tips might seem daunting but if done well, you could really see child's personality blossom!